Fischer's Fab Five

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Justin Townes Earle plays The Bluestone on Sunday, Sept. 7.

L.A. sibling duo The Bots is sort of punk-y -- this is raw, rowdy rock 'n' roll infused with essence of punk and funk. Think Fishbone meets Foo Fighters, or perhaps think British groove-riff duo Royal Blood, which played The Basement just about a month ago.

Which we mention because The Bots, by way of previewing an upcoming debut LP Pink Palms, will play The Basement on Friday, Sept. 5. Tickets are $10/$12.



It didn't take long for The Beat to decide we liked Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds. The band renders old-time funk/R&B with fire and old-time torch blues with ice.

The first YouTube video we pulled up from the band featured a funky, groovy riff with bass, guitar and horns (including harmonica) and, not long thereafter, the beyond-her-years Janis Joplin-meets-Etta James voice of 22-year-old singer Arleigh Kincheloe. However, if the deal needed yet to be sealed, an extended trombone solo did the trick.

Check 'em out Friday, Sept. 5, at Park Street patio. Tickets are $5. Visit


BONUS: More throwback rock of a slightly different MO comes to the Rumba Cafe Saturday, Sept. 6, in the form of the Legendary Shack Shakers. Whether you categorize the music as punk-abilly or agri-dustrial matters little. Frontman Col. J.D. Wilkes knows how to rile up the masses.

Tickets are $12. Visit


The son of Steve Earle, Justin Townes Earle was given his middle name in honor of Townes Van Zandt -- you know, as if genetics weren't enough.

The younger Earle channels both, with a dirty, honest form of country blues, in full effect on his fifth record, Single Mothers. He plays The Bluestone on Sunday, Sept. 7.

Tickets are $20. Visit


BONUS BONUS: Earle is young and crazy talented. Parker Millsap is younger (kid's 21 years old) and maybe crazier talented -- just because you haven't heard of him yet doesn't mean it isn't so. Catch Millsap on his way up Wednesday, Sept. 10, at Natalie's Coal Fired Pizza. Tickets are $25. Visit


New York City's Bishop Allen is a charming quartet of youngsters, boasting both wit and exuberance to spare.

With a new record, Lights Out, released in just the past couple of weeks (the band's first in five years), this is a great time to catch them live. Say, Sunday, Sept. 7, at the Treehouse. Jesse Marchant opens.

Tickets are $7. Visit


Lament all you want that Journey is a shell of its once pop-rock-dominant self -- and The Beat is inclined to agree -- but a chance to watch Neal Schon play guitar in person is well worth the effort.

And dig this: Funk-jazz-rock legend Tower of Power opens for Journey on Tuesday, Sept. 9, at the Schottenstein Center.

Tickets start at $45. Visit